another mini (drafting) adventure

So, the holiday is now (sadly) behind me, and its down to the serious business of getting stuff finished for the course. Here’s a little something I drafted before I went away, but didn’t have time to blog about. It’s a combination of the yoke I drafted for the previous mini skirt and my first attempt at altering to create gathered fabric. All in all, I think it went pretty well. They look is a bit more flattering than the godets, and certainly allows better freedom of movement.

Of course anything in actual life would be a little longer than this, but these are just fun samples!

front view

front view

modified skirt piece to include gathering

modified skirt piece to include gathering



pressed (for time)


First, some good news. I have new fabric (see above) to replace the home dyed fabric job which went so wrong. I studiously refrained from dwelling on the cost as I handed over my bank card. It is a lovely shade of yellow, its a stretch cotton garbardine and I don’t have to go near any dye. That’s all that matters right now!

The organza was no problem at all to dye and happily matches up with the new fabric. This evening was spent pressing the whole lot (quite a few meters in all) in preparation for cutting out.

Now, this is where it gets interesting. As I am about to embark on a 2 week holiday this weekend and my dressmaking course ends mid July. I also have the small matter of finding a new housemate, and visiting my sister to celebrate her Master’s graduation (another 4 days overseas at the end of the month). In short, I am rather pressed for time.

I am hoping I am not cutting it too fine (pun intended) in flitting off now, but if I don’t go at this stage of the year there won’t be any holiday available at work for quite some time. I’ve made another mini skirt to demonstrate gathering pattern drafting (still to blog about), and hope to make a final mini skirt to show off roulou loop closures.

I’ve figured out the following tasks still have to be ticked off the to do sewing list:

Draft a facing (shouldn’t be too hard)

Redraft front of toile dress skirt to check fit

Cut out and sew final dress

Research a current fashion designer linked to Dior (have chosen Thierry Mugler)

Print off all the neatly written text for my portfolio and stick the whole thing together, samples and all

Get everything neatly presented and in order (I know this bit will take a LOT of time)

I think the above is hopefully doable. I have my work (to) cut out. But I have done a fair bit too, so hope this will stand me in good stead. Please wish me luck!

RIP dyed fabric, its curtains on becoming a dress

I have persevered. I have dedicated three whole evenings, bought 6 packs of dye, used goodness knows how much water (green conscience is hanging head in shame) but its time to move on.

The resulting fabric colour IS pretty but just too varied in shade and tone to be suited to making the dress I had in mind. I had even tried using turmeric as a natural dye, which helped (and hey, anything that costs 40 pence as opposed to £5.50 is worth considering!) but I have other things to do, like finish my course in time.

So, it was back to the fabric shop, and a nice yellow gabardine cotton has been purchased which merely requires pre shrinking and then cutting out. Be advised, that nice cheap plain fabric which “won’t cost much to dye” may turn on you and be more expensive than planned. All that dye cost as much as the original fabric which is just a little bit silly when you think about it. I don’t think the thickness of it helped, as it has not even dyed evenly through – one side looks different than the other.

I have invested too much money in it though to not do something with it. So I thought curtains (for the bigger pieces) in my bedroom so I can always wake up to sunshine (even if its miserable out there) was a good idea. My sister pointed out I could also use it as quilt backing. That will be for a future day. The whole lot is currently drying for the very last time out on the line.

The washing machine has been reclaimed for its original purpose, as I have not been able to do any of my normal washing for half a week.

plus turmeric treatment (still damp)

plus turmeric treatment (still damp)